I absolutely love a night on the town with my hubbie.
But life happens. Babysitter canceled, the budget is too tight, kids get sick and the list goes one.
Therefore, date nights out on the town don’t happen near as much as I want them to. So I have created Date Nights In.
The Benefits of Date Night In:
- You don’t need a babysitter–just put the kids to bed early.
- You can have a glass of wine without worrying about driving home.
- It is cheap, therefore it can happen more often.
- You can stay in your PJs–I will leave that one up to your imagination.
For date nights in, often times I order take-out to have a night off from cooking and zero dishes. But sometimes, I like to make a fancy meal for my hubbie and myself and sit down and enjoy a creation that is made with REAL food and that I know will taste delcious.
But even though I like fancy meals for date night, I do NOT want something complicated. Then I am just too worn out to enjoy my evening. But never fear, I have just the recipe for you!
Recipe for Date Night: Chicken Marsala and Roasted Asparagus
So here is the process to get dinner on the table :
Re-hydrate your mushrooms:
To save money and add flavor to a dish, I always start my Chicken Marsala with a pack of dried wild mushrooms. To purchase fresh mushrooms of the variety can be quite pricey. Also, the broth that is created from re-hydrated the mushrooms is a key flavor component to this dish.
Simply cover you dried mushrooms in 1 1/2 cups hot water and let soak anywhere from 10 minutes or overnight (overnight creates a much more flavorful mushroom stock, but if you forgot to plan, just soak long enough to soften mushrooms).
Start with the asparagus So it can roast and get crispy while you cook the chicken marsala.
Trust me, it will make even the pickiest of veggie eaters a convert. These babies are crispy and salty and taste fried.
Start with thin chicken cutlets (or pound out chicken breasts to thin pieces.) Dredge each piece of chicken with flour that has been seasoned with salt and pepper.
- Sear the chicken in olive oil that has been heated over medium-heat until pieces are browned on each side, 3-4 minutes per side.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet and add the Marsala wine. Allow to bring to to boil as you scrape off any brown goodness off the skillet.
- Reduce the heat, add the mushrooms, stock, seared chicken, and seasonings back into the skillet. Whatever you do, don’t forget the thyme! It will add an insane earthiness to this dish that compliments the mushrooms perfectly. This is what helps make it restaurant worthy!
- Serve the chicken over roasted asparagus and generously spoon sauce over the dish. (If you desire a thicker sauce–take 2-3 tablespoons of liquid from dish and mix in 1 teaspoon cornstarch. Add to dish and whisk in well. Cook for several more minutes.)
Set the Ambiance:
- Light candles
- Pour a glass of wine
- Put on some heels–or at least comb your hair
- Turn on some music in the background
- Lock your children in their bedrooms (Just Kidding!! HA!)
Sit down and enjoy your spouse!!
So do something positive for your marriage and make this easy meal and enjoy a wonderful conversation in the comfort of your own home.
This recipe serves 4, so it is also a perfect family meal or one that is great to serve to dinner guests.
- 1 oz wild dried mushrooms
- 1 bunch (about 1 pound) of asparagus, thick ends discarded of
- 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 1 pound of chicken cutlets (or chicken breasts, pounded thin)
- ½ cup flour
- ½ cup Marsala wine
- 3 sprigs of fresh thyme removed from stem and chopped--about 2 teaspoons
- Submerge the mushrooms in 1½ cups hot water for 10 minutes or up to 24 hours. (Do not discard the liquid).
- Preheat oven to 425.
- Season asparagus with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 2 teaspoons of kosher salt and ½ teaspoon pepper..
- Roast for 25 minutes until browned and crispy.
- Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Dredge the chicken cutlets into flour that has been seasoned with 1 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Shake off excess flour.
- Sear the chicken on each side for 3-4 minutes, until browned.
- Remove the chicken from the skillet.
- Add the Marsala wine to the skillet and bring to a boil. Boil for 3-4 minutes, while scraping off the browned bits of chicken.
- Add the mushrooms, stock from the hydrated mushrooms, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, seared chicken and thyme. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes until chicken is cooked through and flavors have had time to develop.
- Serve the chicken and sauce over the roasted asparagus.